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Preview: Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir at Newcastle Blackfriars Ouseburn Cinema

New York’s Reverend Billy returns to the UK in October for a radical mix of passion and politics
Trump Depression Hotline tour in

Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir
Newcastle Blackfriars Ouseburn Cinema
Sunday 22nd October 2017

jah!  Your saviour is at hand. If you’re concerned about a wife with global advertising, multinational control, climate change, the threat of nuclear war, supermarket domination, and all the constant controversy caused by the US President’s outpourings, this is for you.
If you’re not, this is REALLY for you!

Award-winning wild anti-consumerist gospel shouters and Earth-loving urban activists Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir return to the UK for a whistlestop tour of the country and call of at The Blackfriars Ouseburn Cinema Newcastle on Sunday 22ndOctober. They’ll be spreading the word of Earthelujah and encouraging us all to join the struggle to avert the threatened Shopacolypse. Expect humour, great music and an unshakeable belief.

Church of Stop Shopping is a New York based secular political religion founded in 1999. Their performances in concert halls (and the Tesco cash tills exorcisms) are directed by Savitri D, who co-founded the ‘church’ with Talen in the months after 9/11.

Since Trump, the Frankenstein of shopping culture, won - or stole - the election, the church has been a repository of community anguish. The choir has opened for Neil Young, been produced by Laurie Anderson, and hosted a Black Lives Matter benefit with Joan Baez as well as hosting their own parades, boycotts, and protests – all whilst singing multiple harmonies. To date they have performed in, and Billy has exorcised cash registers in, over a dozen countries and four continents.

‘Rev and his choir enrapture large audiences with sermons to which Jesus himself would have said Amen’ Kurt Vonnegut

The Rev has an advice column in a New York newspaper called ‘Trump Depression Hotline’ – and this effort to bring mindfulness and hilarity to these dark times became the name of the UK tour. ‘We gotta love everybody and show them we care ‘til they can’t Trump anymore’ he said.

‘Talen’s message resonates with the words W. H. Auden wrote on the eve of World War II… “We must love one another or die.” ‘ Village Voice

Savitri D and Reverend Billy have taken to spending time in the public garden of Trump Tower, ‘We walk past the submachine guns and dogs, the body armour and the golden name of the white supremacist president that hovers in space above the door’ said Rev Billy ‘We travel up gold-plated escalators to legally protected privately owned public space then we write together for 45 minutes. At the end we stand with our writing and recite or shout or sing our words at the 700 foot tall gold-tinted monstrosity’ added Savitri D.

‘the Church’s honesty, passion and lack of cynicism is inspiring’ The Guardian

Reverend Billy Talen is an actor, performance artist and activist who began his experimental preaching in Times Square in 1994. Soon singers were accompanying his ‘retail Interventions’ inside chain stores, principal targets being Disney, GAP, Nike, and Starbucks. He is legally banned from every branch of Starbucks in the USA and the coffee giant has issued a memo to its managers ‘What should I do if Reverend Billy is in my store?’

The Church of Stop Shopping hold ‘services’ wherever they can, in theatres, churches, community centres, forests, parking lots, shopping malls, and perhaps most importantly, inside stores, as close to the cash register as they can get, within spitting distance of the point of purchase. Their feature film ‘What Would Jesus Buy’ was produced by Morgan Spurlock and their earlier film Preacher With an Unknown God won the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival.

Sun 22 October 7.30pm
Reverend Billy & the Stop Shopping Choir Trump Depression Hotline Tour
New York’s award-winning wild anti-consumerist gospel shouters and Earth-loving urban environmental activists come to Newcastle to spread their word. Expect humour, great music and an unshakeable belief.
The Blackfriars Ouseburn Cinema @ St Vincent de Paul Society,
Newcastle, NE1 2TQ     
£9.50, £7, £4.50 concessions, under 12’s free   

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